What Difference Does It Make?

by Jay Deragon on 01/28/2013

differenceMaking a little difference means a lot to some people. Making a big difference can mean changing the lives to a lot of people. Either way making a difference can change everything.

Businesses need to start thinking about how their products, services and culture can make a difference. If businesses screened every decision through the “making a difference” filter then they would think about everything  in context to these questions: 1) Is it good for the customer? 2) Is it good for the employees? 3) Is it good for our shareholders?

What is good for the company is not a question it is the result of answering and delivering on all three questions.

The degree of “good” determines how much difference is made. Incremental differences in product quality or response times on service could mean a lot to some people.  Creating a product or service that makes a huge difference in a lot of peoples lives could mean a lot to more people.

Allowing a single Mom of three to work at home would mean a lot to her and her family. Creating products that creates valuable experiences for the customer would mean a lot to a lot of customers. Making a difference for the Mom and value for the customer would make a difference to your shareholders.  Follow the value chain of what difference does it make and you’ll always find the beginning of what makes the most difference to whom.

Who Can Make The Biggest Difference?

Differences that create the most value are made by people who understand how to create the most meaning. Making the most difference doesn’t start with the what rather the who.  Who you make a difference to or for begins the discovery of what the difference is or ought to be. By defining who you want to make the biggest difference for or to you then can determine who can actually make the difference happen.

People make the biggest difference in other peoples lives. A product that makes a difference was thought of, produced, delivered and serviced by a person.  A service that makes a difference is delivered by a person who either delivered it or who created the delivery process.

Making a difference is not always about a product, a service or a profit. However making a difference is always about caring, creating, doing and acting on things that have the most meaning to people.

{ 1 comment }

Rick Botelho February 3, 2013 at 6:40 am

What about corporate social responsibility, sustainable development and green economies?

Add question 4:
Does it make a difference to stakeholders?

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